CfP: Register II: Emergence, Change and Obsolescence. An international colloquium on meaning and human expression

Karina Lukin karina.lukin at
Mon Oct 22 10:42:52 UTC 2012

Call for Papers

Register II:  Emergence, Change and Obsolescence

An international colloquium on meaning and human expression
22nd–24th May 2013, Helsinki, Finland

‘Register’ originated as a term in linguistics for contextual variation 
in language, or language as it is used in a particular communicative 
situation.  This term and concept has become important for addressing 
communication through practice in several intersecting disciplines, such 
as folkloristics, linguistics and linguistic anthropology, being used 
with varying fields of inclusion and exclusion, ranging from the purely 
verbal level of communication to all features which have the capacity to 
signify (props, gestures, etc.). The Helsinki Register colloquia have 
been organized to bring together representatives of diverse perspectives 
in order to open cross-disciplinary discussion of the term and concept 

Register II sets out to explore interfaces of social, societal and 
semiotic processes that a) give rise to registers as meaningful 
constellations of communicative features; b) affect existing registers 
and their constituent features; and c) lead registers to become obsolete 
for certain functions or to drop out of use.  We invite presentations on 
both synchronically oriented research and on long-term historical 
perspectives; on rapidly developing or short-lived registers (e.g. 
school-yard slang, ‘facebookese’) as well as on registers characterized 
by social stability and slow-changing structures (e.g. ‘Biblical’ 
language, oral epic singing).  We hope that diverse presentations from 
different disciplinary perspectives on the life of registers as social 
practice will prove reciprocally informative and produce new insights 
and understandings.

Keynote speakers:
- Douglas Biber, Regents’ Professor of Applied Linguistics, Northern 
Arizona University, USA
- Charles Briggs, Alan Dundes Distinguished Professor of Folklore and 
Professor of Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley, USA
- Ruqaiya Hasan, Emeritus Professor of Linguistics, Macquarie 
University, Australia
- Timo Kaartinen, Adjunct Professor of Social and Cultural Anthropology, 
University of Helsinki, Finland
- Lars Boje Mortensen, Professor of Cultural History of Antiquity and 
the Middle Ages, University of Southern Denmark, Denmark

If you would like to take part in this event by presenting a paper, 
please send an abstracts of no more than 500 words to Ulla Savolainen 
(ulla.savolainen[a] by Friday, 30th November 2012.

Papers presentations should be twenty minutes in length allowing ten 
minutes for discussion and accessible to participants from other fields 
for cross-disciplinary discussion.  If you would like to participate 
without presenting a paper, please let us know by March 15th, and also 
whether you would be interested in moderating a session. A participation 
fee of 50€ covers lunches and receptions.

- Folklore Studies of the University of Helsinki
- The research project Oral and Literary Culture in the Medieval and 
Early Modern Baltic Sea Region of the Finnish Literature Society

For more information, please visit our website at:

Viestin välitti,
Karina Lukin

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